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Poll
Question: Byzantine or Russian chant?
Byzantine chant - 33 (70.2%)
Russian chant - 14 (29.8%)
Total Voters: 47

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Cyrillic
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« on: October 28, 2012, 04:24:56 PM »

Well, what do you like more, Russian or Byzantine chant?
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« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2012, 04:28:18 PM »

Well, what do you like more, Russian or Byzantine chant?

The question is flawed. What kind of Russian chant?
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« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2012, 04:30:57 PM »

Well, what do you like more, Russian or Byzantine chant?

The question is flawed. What kind of Russian chant?

The common one. But they all sound the same to me.
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« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2012, 04:33:30 PM »

I like both but have to lean byzantine!
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« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2012, 04:38:14 PM »

I like both but have to lean byzantine!

Ι sing Byzantine chants under the shower and on my bike. I always hope nobody hears me because I'm really bad at singing  Tongue
« Last Edit: October 28, 2012, 04:38:24 PM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2012, 04:42:07 PM »

But they all sound the same to me.

The range is pretty big, with monophonic Znamenny on the one hand and really elaborate operatic stuff on the other.

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Ι sing Byzantine chants under the shower

Me too! The shower sounds like an ison.
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« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2012, 04:48:37 PM »

Znamenny is sometimes almost indistinguishable from Byzantine. Especially when they throw in an ison, it's really quite cool.

I was initially drawn to the 4-part harmony of Russian Common Chant, and I do still think it's very beautiful. But I must say Byzantine has now really grown on me, the complexity, the rhythm, and the different patterns and sounds of the tones, and I prefer well-done Byzantine chant to anything else.

It's not always beautiful. Today half our choir started on the same wrong pitch, resulting in a very dissonant "G major" kind of sound for an entire song. (Because you can't stop and get back on track. No, no, no.)
« Last Edit: October 28, 2012, 04:56:02 PM by age234 » Logged
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« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2012, 05:03:41 PM »

From what I've heard from YouTube and my parish's choir (which does both), Russian by a mile.
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« Reply #8 on: October 28, 2012, 07:39:48 PM »

I prefer Byzantine chant mostly, but as others have noted the older style Slavic chants are more like Byzantine and I love their simplicity. My issue with the operatic Russian stuff is that much of it sounds like a trip to the Magic Kingdom rather than the Kingdom of God. Disney choirs are not sacred.

The chant that the Russian Old Believers use is really moving and captivating. I wish that the gradually emerging indigenous chant in North America was more based on this style. But I will say that a straight translation of a Byzantine song into English often sounds awkward and inauthentic. It takes time for something more organic to emerge.
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« Reply #9 on: October 28, 2012, 09:00:48 PM »

Byzantine Chant is my favorite chant tradition especially when its chanted in Arabic or Romanian.
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« Reply #10 on: October 29, 2012, 12:23:33 AM »

Znamenny

St. Vlad's Seminary Znamenny, or Znamenny Znamenny?
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« Reply #11 on: October 29, 2012, 12:48:29 AM »

Ok so 90% of people are voting Byzantine chant (I accidentally voted for them when I meant Russian).

Can y'all link me to some good Byzantine chant, then, because most of what I've heard doesn't even begin to approach stuff like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wujZiZ3ZRXU
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« Reply #12 on: October 29, 2012, 12:56:52 AM »

The choir of the Vatopedi Monastery on Mt Athos is about as good as it gets.
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« Reply #13 on: October 29, 2012, 01:20:17 AM »

Ok so 90% of people are voting Byzantine chant (I accidentally voted for them when I meant Russian).

Can y'all link me to some good Byzantine chant, then, because most of what I've heard doesn't even begin to approach stuff like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wujZiZ3ZRXU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IF1FATlYGjk&feature=plcp

www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbbXkP3IEyE&feature=plcp

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zM9ZBr3Ayeg&feature=plcp
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« Reply #14 on: October 29, 2012, 01:43:58 AM »

So
Ok so 90% of people are voting Byzantine chant (I accidentally voted for them when I meant Russian).

Can y'all link me to some good Byzantine chant, then, because most of what I've heard doesn't even begin to approach stuff like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wujZiZ3ZRXU

Gladsome Light: http://youtu.be/pFJQNQ83s78

The Mighty Captain: http://youtu.be/jH18PKaPyaU

First stasis of the Paraklesis: http://youtu.be/ciW--99qXo0 (I love this one)

First section of the Akathist: http://youtu.be/-nUZnE1tp7Y

Communion Hymn: http://youtu.be/6_4K7y_5qa8
« Last Edit: October 29, 2012, 01:52:08 AM by age234 » Logged
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« Reply #15 on: October 29, 2012, 08:53:16 AM »

Can y'all link me to some good Byzantine chant, then,

For Greek, Lycourgos Angelopoulos' group, Romeiko Ensemble, Capella Romana, the monks of Simonopetra and Vatopaidi monasteries, are all pretty good choirs, though I've found the best chanters are usually not very well known. I've heard much better stuff in real life than I have managed to find on youtube.

For Arabic the Mount Lebanon and Balamand choirs are really good.

I have some very nice recordings in both Romanian and Slavonic but can't remember the names of the choirs.

Quote
most of what I've heard doesn't even begin to approach stuff like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wujZiZ3ZRXU

I like this piece a lot, it's basically Georgian style. Very different from what you're likely to hear in any Russian church.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2012, 08:54:52 AM by Orthodox11 » Logged
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« Reply #16 on: October 29, 2012, 11:07:59 AM »

A compromise: Russian 'Greek' chant Wink

Generally, I prefer byzantine chant. Only in some cases I prefer East Slavonic chants (e.g various 6th tones, troparion and kontakion of the Transfigurarion in the 7th tone doesn't matter Russian or Polish style)


I have some very nice recordings in both Romanian and Slavonic but can't remember the names of the choirs.


As for Romanian, choirs: Evloghia, Tronos, Byzantion. I also like choir Cassia and choir Madrigal.

As for Slavonic, the youth choir of st. John Damascene from Russia, Serbian choir Moisej Petrovic, male choir from Optina and some others (that's what I remember in this moment)
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« Reply #17 on: October 29, 2012, 11:16:27 AM »

This is a good one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60_kfOfDKR4
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« Reply #18 on: October 29, 2012, 11:51:24 AM »

Questions like this are akin to fingernails scratching a chalkboard to my taste. Both are fine. What counts is what is in a person's heart - not the noise coming out of their mouths.
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« Reply #19 on: October 29, 2012, 11:54:32 AM »


Nice. I just found this one too http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=09lWB06kqfA
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« Reply #20 on: October 29, 2012, 12:36:46 PM »

Questions like this are akin to fingernails scratching a chalkboard to my taste. Both are fine. What counts is what is in a person's heart - not the noise coming out of their mouths.

Don't open threads like these if you don't like them.
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« Reply #21 on: October 29, 2012, 03:43:57 PM »

Questions like this are akin to fingernails scratching a chalkboard to my taste. Both are fine. What counts is what is in a person's heart - not the noise coming out of their mouths.

Don't open threads like these if you don't like them.

Don't think that the Church is some sort of pick and choose salad bar - way too many inquirers take that approach and flame out. A discussion about chant options is one thing - a poll is stupid and leads to the endless nonsense that we Orthodox seem to revel in - 'my way is more Orthodox than your way.'
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« Reply #22 on: October 29, 2012, 05:10:04 PM »

Don't think that the Church is some sort of pick and choose salad bar - way too many inquirers take that approach and flame out. A discussion about chant options is one thing - a poll is stupid and leads to the endless nonsense that we Orthodox seem to revel in - 'my way is more Orthodox than your way.'

To be fair, the question was "which do you like more" not "which is better". So far I don't think anyone in the thread has argued about the superiority or propriety of any chant style, they have only indicated their personal preferences for one or the other (or neither).
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« Reply #23 on: October 30, 2012, 03:06:58 PM »

Byzantine Chant, most Russian styles are far to western for me. If I listen to Russian, I prefer Znamenny...

It is Truly Meet in Znamenny: http://youtu.be/TF4q6RUziRc

Stichera of St. Sergius of Radonezh: http://youtu.be/6E6QWiIOJlk

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« Reply #24 on: October 31, 2012, 12:58:52 AM »

I love all the chant traditions. I couldn't say I liked one more than the other. Prayer is prayer. Smiley

The Russian and Greek chanting traditions are motivated by different philosophies (I won't address intermediate forms such as Romanian). Russian chant is choral and focuses on group cohesion. In contrast, Greek tradition has one or a few chanters chanting at a time, antiphonally, and the skill of the individual chanter is highly prized.

As others have pointed out, there are many variations within each tradition. Even within Greece, there are many specific styles of Byzantine chant which may sound very different, and some of them are more representative of tradition than others. Noteworthy local styles include those of the Patriarchal church, Thessaloniki, the islands, Athens, and Constantinople (the Patriarchal church has a different style from the other churches in the city). Of these, the most authentic are the old chanters of the Great Church of Christ, especially Iakovos Nafpliotis. These are the people whom everyone either imitates or pretends to imitate. Mount Athos tends to have the most heavily Western-influenced style.

Generally, performance groups such as the Greek Byzantine Choir are not good standards for Byzantine chant. Their style is very divergent from oral tradition. Capella Romana definitely has a heavy Western influence (which is NOT bad, but is not representative of authentic Byzantine chant). Vatopedi and Simonopetra Monasteries are also very innovative.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry when I hear people railing about how Byzantine chant is so much holier than Western church music, and their favorite chant "group" is something like Capella Romana. (Not talking about anyone in particular, but I hear this a lot in real life.) Most of these people balk when they hear the actual sound of Eastern chants.

In short, anything you can buy on Amazon is probably way left of center. Chant is for church, not CD players, so if you're imitating something you got on Amazon, that may be the wrong approach.

I hope I haven't made Podkarpatska's finger-scratching nightmare come true. angel
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« Reply #25 on: October 31, 2012, 01:05:21 AM »

The chant that the Russian Old Believers use is really moving and captivating. I wish that the gradually emerging indigenous chant in North America was more based on this style. But I will say that a straight translation of a Byzantine song into English often sounds awkward and inauthentic. It takes time for something more organic to emerge.

I agree with this. The Russian chant styles are very flexible. Byzantine chant is difficult to work with, because the style favors the rhythm and accentuation of the Greek language. So, composing in English is difficult to say the least. Also, the vocal style and ornamentations of Russian chant are more appealing to most Westerners.
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« Reply #26 on: October 31, 2012, 03:11:15 AM »

I don't really care what others do but please keep Byzantine chant out of my church.
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« Reply #27 on: October 31, 2012, 07:01:38 AM »

Generally, performance groups such as the Greek Byzantine Choir are not good standards for Byzantine chant. Their style is very divergent from oral tradition. Capella Romana definitely has a heavy Western influence (which is NOT bad, but is not representative of authentic Byzantine chant). Vatopedi and Simonopetra Monasteries are also very innovative.

Such groups generally make a point of using styles and compositions which are less well known, particularly Capella Romana and the Romeiko Ensemble. Then you have people like Petros Gaitanos and Fr. Nikodemos (of youtube fame) who, although they sing very well, are singers rather than chanters, something reflected in their style.
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« Reply #28 on: October 31, 2012, 08:47:23 AM »

Byzantine chant is supposed to be chanted by choirs, not individuals. The lack of skills in today's world makes this rare, but single chanters is not the ideal in Byzantine chant. Groups like Capella Romana perform Byzantine music as it sounded at its best—which is rare in the west, and maybe the east too. (CR does a lot of different styles too, from western music to westernized 15th c. Byzantine to very eastern Byzantine).

Pretty much all the liturgical music we use has musical notation, it's not supposed to be made up on the fly (contrary to popular belief). Thus it's possible and ideal for Byzantine chant to be sung by choirs. Hopefully someday it will all be translated, but it does exist.
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« Reply #29 on: October 31, 2012, 09:05:03 AM »

I love all the chant traditions. I couldn't say I liked one more than the other. Prayer is prayer. Smiley

The Russian and Greek chanting traditions are motivated by different philosophies (I won't address intermediate forms such as Romanian). Russian chant is choral and focuses on group cohesion. In contrast, Greek tradition has one or a few chanters chanting at a time, antiphonally, and the skill of the individual chanter is highly prized.

As others have pointed out, there are many variations within each tradition. Even within Greece, there are many specific styles of Byzantine chant which may sound very different, and some of them are more representative of tradition than others. Noteworthy local styles include those of the Patriarchal church, Thessaloniki, the islands, Athens, and Constantinople (the Patriarchal church has a different style from the other churches in the city). Of these, the most authentic are the old chanters of the Great Church of Christ, especially Iakovos Nafpliotis. These are the people whom everyone either imitates or pretends to imitate. Mount Athos tends to have the most heavily Western-influenced style.

Generally, performance groups such as the Greek Byzantine Choir are not good standards for Byzantine chant. Their style is very divergent from oral tradition. Capella Romana definitely has a heavy Western influence (which is NOT bad, but is not representative of authentic Byzantine chant). Vatopedi and Simonopetra Monasteries are also very innovative.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry when I hear people railing about how Byzantine chant is so much holier than Western church music, and their favorite chant "group" is something like Capella Romana. (Not talking about anyone in particular, but I hear this a lot in real life.) Most of these people balk when they hear the actual sound of Eastern chants.

In short, anything you can buy on Amazon is probably way left of center. Chant is for church, not CD players, so if you're imitating something you got on Amazon, that may be the wrong approach.

I hope I haven't made Podkarpatska's finger-scratching nightmare come true. angel

Actually not - as you summed up my own personal feelings on the subject quite precisely. Prayer is prayer - it's one thing to express a preference, but quite another to take a poll or have rankings. Next thing you know we'll have an Orthodox Chant-off show on youtube complete with online voting..... Wink Wink Wink
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« Reply #30 on: October 31, 2012, 12:10:29 PM »

Generally, performance groups such as the Greek Byzantine Choir are not good standards for Byzantine chant. Their style is very divergent from oral tradition. Capella Romana definitely has a heavy Western influence (which is NOT bad, but is not representative of authentic Byzantine chant). Vatopedi and Simonopetra Monasteries are also very innovative.

Such groups generally make a point of using styles and compositions which are less well known, particularly Capella Romana and the Romeiko Ensemble. Then you have people like Petros Gaitanos and Fr. Nikodemos (of youtube fame) who, although they sing very well, are singers rather than chanters, something reflected in their style.

I agree with you about the bolded statement. The two choirs you've mentioned like using reconstructed melodies from medieval manuscripts. Some of their academic work is very interesting, but their performance practice is speculative.


Byzantine chant is supposed to be chanted by choirs, not individuals. The lack of skills in today's world makes this rare, but single chanters is not the ideal in Byzantine chant. Groups like Capella Romana perform Byzantine music as it sounded at its best—which is rare in the west, and maybe the east too. (CR does a lot of different styles too, from western music to westernized 15th c. Byzantine to very eastern Byzantine).

Pretty much all the liturgical music we use has musical notation, it's not supposed to be made up on the fly (contrary to popular belief). Thus it's possible and ideal for Byzantine chant to be sung by choirs. Hopefully someday it will all be translated, but it does exist.

Well, in Byzantine times, we know that choirs were used at least in the large cathedrals, possibly everywhere. During Ottoman times, the practice devolved to each parish having one or two chanters. The Patriarchal church alone preserved the choral form of chant. During the 19th Century, the practice of having multiple chanters spread to other churches again.

(Meanwhile, the Westernized Greeks had adopted Russian- or European-style choral music, but we're just talking about chant here.)

So it can be properly performed by a single chanter, or a few, or an entire choir if available.

I agree that the more, the merrier, and IME most chanters like getting a group of people to do it with them, and are disappointed when people aren't up to it. I was just pointing out the reality that Byzantine chant is generally not choral.

CR and Romeiko perform speculative reconstructions of old music. The performance style is geared towards Western audiences. As far as I know, neither of these groups claims to be representing "correct" modern Byzantine chant, so they definitely should not be taken that way.
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« Reply #31 on: October 31, 2012, 12:24:22 PM »

I'm curious as to why so many more people prefer Byzantine chant to Russian. I though it would be the other way around. Surely you find Russian chant sweeter to your ears..? And how do you get over the harsh Byzantine vocal style and rhythmic weirdnesses?
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« Reply #32 on: October 31, 2012, 01:13:27 PM »

I'm curious as to why so many more people prefer Byzantine chant to Russian. I though it would be the other way around. Surely you find Russian chant sweeter to your ears..? And how do you get over the harsh Byzantine vocal style and rhythmic weirdnesses?

I would be willing to speculate that for some who are seeking what they think is 'authentic' Orthodoxy - to which a wise priest I remember once referring to those as 'folks munching on our salad bar - a bit of this, a bit of that -' like the Byzantine because it is somewhat discordant and rhythmically 'weird' to our western ears, while Russian or Slavic chants are more melodious. This is due to a mistaken conflation of striving to automatically reject anything one thinks stems from western influences and trying to be more 'authentic' and the age old Orthodox mistake of confusing 'tradition' with 'the Tradition.' 

If I were in a Hellenic oriented church I would find Znammeny out of place and vice-versa were I to find Russians or Ukrainians utilizing Byzantine chant as their normative form.
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« Reply #33 on: October 31, 2012, 01:36:39 PM »

I'm curious as to why so many more people prefer Byzantine chant to Russian. I though it would be the other way around. Surely you find Russian chant sweeter to your ears..? And how do you get over the harsh Byzantine vocal style and rhythmic weirdnesses?

Being a Westerner doesn't mean you will automatically dislike anything that doesn't sound familiar to you. I think the whole thing about Russian music being "sweeter to the Western ear" might be true for some, but on the whole is a bit of a cliché. Likewise, podkarpatska's theory about rejecting all things Western might be true for some, but very few. The tradition thing might be more true (though in that case it would be a question of monophony vs. 4 part harmony, not Russian vs. Byzantine), but even then I think it's a bit patronising to suggest that a Westerner probably only appreciates Byzantine music for ideological reasons. I would venture to guess that most of the people who picked Byzantine above simply like that particular form of chant because they enjoy listening to it and it helps them pray, not because it's exotic or because they're hyperdox or anti-western. It's just their personal preference.
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« Reply #34 on: October 31, 2012, 02:06:40 PM »

Romanian chanting tradition isn't really intermediate between Greek and Russian. It is, of course heavily indebted to the Greek/C-pole tradition but virtually untouched by the Great Russian traditions. It is however also influenced by the Serbian and Bulgarian. The Putna school I think was instrumental, during the early to mid 15th centuries in transmitting certain Greek chants further to the north, such as Kiev, Suprasl etc. But those were Slavonic chants, as Romanian only started to be used in the cult during the 16th century with Filotei sin Aga Jipei being the first to compose or adapt Byzantine melodies in Romanian (1713). Then again, the folk music is probably the most noticeable influence in the style of chanting one will hear especially in Transylvania, Maramures, Banat.

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« Reply #35 on: October 31, 2012, 02:49:08 PM »

Romanian chanting tradition isn't really intermediate between Greek and Russian. It is, of course heavily indebted to the Greek/C-pole tradition but virtually untouched by the Great Russian traditions. It is however also influenced by the Serbian and Bulgarian. The Putna school I think was instrumental, during the early to mid 15th centuries in transmitting certain Greek chants further to the north, such as Kiev, Suprasl etc. But those were Slavonic chants, as Romanian only started to be used in the cult during the 16th century with Filotei sin Aga Jipei being the first to compose or adapt Byzantine melodies in Romanian (1713). Then again, the folk music is probably the most noticeable influence in the style of chanting one will hear especially in Transylvania, Maramures, Banat.

Quote
I won't address intermediate forms such as Romanian

OK. Whenever I've heard Romanian Greek-style chant, it's using the Greek musical lines, but the performance style is way European, i.e. Western intervals, each note is hit exactly on-beat, etc. I don't know much about the native Eastern European chanting traditions (including the Russian), so I'm gonna google around to find some of the non-Greek-influenced Romanian forms you are referring to.
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« Reply #36 on: October 31, 2012, 03:14:00 PM »

I'm curious as to why so many more people prefer Byzantine chant to Russian. I though it would be the other way around. Surely you find Russian chant sweeter to your ears..? And how do you get over the harsh Byzantine vocal style and rhythmic weirdnesses?

Being a Westerner doesn't mean you will automatically dislike anything that doesn't sound familiar to you. I think the whole thing about Russian music being "sweeter to the Western ear" might be true for some, but on the whole is a bit of a cliché. Likewise, podkarpatska's theory about rejecting all things Western might be true for some, but very few. The tradition thing might be more true (though in that case it would be a question of monophony vs. 4 part harmony, not Russian vs. Byzantine), but even then I think it's a bit patronising to suggest that a Westerner probably only appreciates Byzantine music for ideological reasons. I would venture to guess that most of the people who picked Byzantine above simply like that particular form of chant because they enjoy listening to it and it helps them pray, not because it's exotic or because they're hyperdox or anti-western. It's just their personal preference.

I can't speak for Europe or  Great Britain, but from this side of the 'pond', one of the common complaints you will hear from either cradle Orthodox or long-term converts is that 'newbies' are often so full of zeal and desire to be 'completely' Orthodox that they will accept any folk tale or half-baked theory from one writer or another about this or that tradition being compromised by the west.

I agree with Augustin's observations about Romanian chant as some of the same applies to the Rusyn and Galician chant styles which also are indebted to some extent by contact with the Serbian and Bulgarian traditions - as well as 'znammenyj' influences. Musicologists have noted tonal and pacing similarities between those chants and some of the Old Believer chant stlying as well. What is interesting in Rusyn chant is that Irmosi for special holy days is atypically atonal and can be traced back to the Byzantine style of chant which influenced the historical development of all of the subsequent styles in the Orthodox world. A five or six part history of these developments as formulated by Dr. Stephen Reynolds at the University of Oregon in the 1970's may be of interest:   http://www.acrod.org/ministries/music/plainchant/pchistorypt1 which includes narrative and some notated examples.

The complexity of the subject of chant in the Orthodox church is much more than a simplistic reduction between non-polyphonic Byzantine chant and four part choral 'Russian' chant - I guess that is at the root of my aversion to a simple yes/no question.
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« Reply #37 on: October 31, 2012, 03:51:31 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara
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« Reply #38 on: October 31, 2012, 04:06:37 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Interesting and thank you for the link..the style of the priest's chanting is, but for it being in Romanian, akin to that heard among the Rusyn and Magyar Greek Catholics a bit further north in the Carpathians. The cantorial responses don't really sound similar - but the pacing is similar in a 'sing/song' manner.

Here is an example of the Rusyn Irmos from the Feast of the Entrance of the Theotokas into the Temple - http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/recordings/DivineLiturgies/529EntranceTheotokosIrmos.mp3 - the Byzantine roots of the hymnology are clear. Another example is from Theophany:  http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/recordings/DivineLiturgies/582TheophanyIrmos.mp3  There are a series of such for the immoveable and moveable feasts. (The Byzantine Cantors Institute is a misnamed, but noble endeavor of the BCC Eparchy of Pittsburgh. Working with both Greek Catholic and Orthodox cantors and students, they have put out a wide range of source material on the Rusyn chant tradition. It is interesting that these hymns are not typical of normal Rusyn chant, which is more folk influenced as is the Romanian tradition. ) Other tones are adapted from Bolhar/Bulgarian sources as in the funereal lamentations of St. John of Damascus - sure to bring the most hardened baba to tears back in the day.... http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/recordings/PappIrmologion/FuneralHymnTone5Bolhar.mp3

My point is that there within the many offshoots of Byzantine chant roots are many branches - most of which may be traced to the source, but which evolved in different directions over the many centuries. After all, we honor the notion of national, self ruling churches in Orthodoxy, unlike the hegemony of the west, so it is important to know that there are more unique and useful traditions out there which merit preservation and use.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2012, 04:26:23 PM by podkarpatska » Logged
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« Reply #39 on: October 31, 2012, 04:40:57 PM »

I think it is about actual chanting vs. composed hymns/melodies.

I prefer actual chanting styles to composed music in worship. There is just something about it that is heavenly and angelic.

Western
Old Roman: http://youtu.be/2JOShBSsql0
Gregorian: http://youtu.be/HxjYWvF5ttc
Cistercian: http://youtu.be/1_8Nrx-67EY
Gothic: http://youtu.be/cX9bYNK5oC0
Gallican: http://youtu.be/Ip5f1_Qcyxc
Mozarabic: http://youtu.be/0guT53naKxQ
Ambrosian: http://youtu.be/RrUxaISuk50
Gaelic: http://youtu.be/AYE16lyw9J8

Eastern
Byzantine: http://youtu.be/_0N28P0BRYI
Serbian: http://youtu.be/IzUjBkCn71M
Romanian: http://youtu.be/HXocyx-xVqM
Bulgarian: http://youtu.be/tKOjMRwGFPY
Znamenny: http://youtu.be/TF4q6RUziRc
Georgian: http://youtu.be/0TiXh7kSCtM
Arabic: http://youtu.be/vZxwHmjxVcE
Coptic: http://youtu.be/s80v7zpAfLM
Armenian: http://youtu.be/UIxdjpBvM8U
Syriac: http://youtu.be/-Wo00EgsT6Y
Albanian: http://youtu.be/HPYUZ0MGKpU
Macedonian: http://youtu.be/NyV5mBaEsQg

(these aren't necessarily old chants, just various styles in East/West regardless of age & time period)

Then compare it to this-

Rachmaninov's Divine Liturgy: http://youtu.be/IiSiRAZRCVA
Mikhail Ippolitov-Ivanov's Vespers: http://youtu.be/Pbx9aJpFOrA

The two are just far too different, and while both are very beautiful and holy, I would argue that the former examples are more "mystical" and "other-worldly".
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« Reply #40 on: October 31, 2012, 05:03:40 PM »

Questions like this are akin to fingernails scratching a chalkboard to my taste. Both are fine. What counts is what is in a person's heart - not the noise coming out of their mouths.

ditto
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« Reply #41 on: October 31, 2012, 06:22:31 PM »

I can't speak for Europe or  Great Britain, but from this side of the 'pond', one of the common complaints you will hear from either cradle Orthodox or long-term converts is that 'newbies' are often so full of zeal and desire to be 'completely' Orthodox that they will accept any folk tale or half-baked theory from one writer or another about this or that tradition being compromised by the west.

Sure, you get people like that. My point, though, is that I think the majority of Westerners who enjoy Byzantine chant just happen to enjoy Byzantine chant. Suggesting that it's far too exotic for Western ears, and that they therefore must be doing it because it's "more correct" or "not Western" is what I find patronising. Most people, including Westerners, just happen to really like it for no other reason than that they like it.

Quote
The complexity of the subject of chant in the Orthodox church is much more than a simplistic reduction between non-polyphonic Byzantine chant and four part choral 'Russian' chant - I guess that is at the root of my aversion to a simple yes/no question.

I agree. You can talk about "Byzantine chant", despite there being different chant styles and interpretations, but "Russian chant" is such a broad category it doesn't really mean anything, the same thing goes for the term "polyphonic". There's a huge difference between harmonised chant, for example, and other more elaborate forms of polyphony.
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« Reply #42 on: October 31, 2012, 06:52:13 PM »


I think the majority of Westerners who enjoy Byzantine chant just happen to enjoy Byzantine chant.

...

You can talk about "Byzantine chant", despite there being different chant styles and interpretations, but "Russian chant" is such a broad category it doesn't really mean anything.
Some of the styles of Byzantine chant I don't find esthetically pleasing. However, I am trying to grow in my appreciation of some of the more "exotic" varieties. I am partial to the often, and I believe unfairly, maligned North Americanized variety. I think it is a reaction to what I experienced in my former Protestant life where musical performance was and is expected to be good entertainment. The apparent simplicity of Byzantine chant stands in contrast to that. I appreciate the emphasis on the content rather than on the music itself. I find many of the choral arrangements of Russian styles to be distracting in their beauty - a delight to the ear, but less effective for worship.

Does anyone else get annoyed by a haphazard mix of styles within one service?
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« Reply #43 on: October 31, 2012, 06:56:47 PM »

I really like this (which I have posted before):

http://youtu.be/psvGa_qBJsw

It has a Gregorian/Latin flavour to it, but is still familiar to my Greek ears.

The power in the priest's voice at "Thine own of Thine own" is amazing.
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« Reply #44 on: November 01, 2012, 01:05:21 AM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
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« Reply #45 on: November 01, 2012, 07:14:29 AM »

Sorry but I guess I'm biased, when properly performed, Byzantine music is insuperable:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vpt-6zLVycE
Greeks and Romanians: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3jjaDOHtII&feature=related
Greeks and Arabs: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUD0oRAfZQs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13cdweMPH_Q
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qG5JWZlpfBA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D87SZDNKDaM
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« Reply #46 on: November 01, 2012, 07:27:05 AM »

I love all the chant traditions. I couldn't say I liked one more than the other. Prayer is prayer. Smiley

The Russian and Greek chanting traditions are motivated by different philosophies (I won't address intermediate forms such as Romanian). Russian chant is choral and focuses on group cohesion. In contrast, Greek tradition has one or a few chanters chanting at a time, antiphonally, and the skill of the individual chanter is highly prized.

As others have pointed out, there are many variations within each tradition. Even within Greece, there are many specific styles of Byzantine chant which may sound very different, and some of them are more representative of tradition than others. Noteworthy local styles include those of the Patriarchal church, Thessaloniki, the islands, Athens, and Constantinople (the Patriarchal church has a different style from the other churches in the city). Of these, the most authentic are the old chanters of the Great Church of Christ, especially Iakovos Nafpliotis. These are the people whom everyone either imitates or pretends to imitate. Mount Athos tends to have the most heavily Western-influenced style.

Generally, performance groups such as the Greek Byzantine Choir are not good standards for Byzantine chant. Their style is very divergent from oral tradition. Capella Romana definitely has a heavy Western influence (which is NOT bad, but is not representative of authentic Byzantine chant). Vatopedi and Simonopetra Monasteries are also very innovative.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry when I hear people railing about how Byzantine chant is so much holier than Western church music, and their favorite chant "group" is something like Capella Romana. (Not talking about anyone in particular, but I hear this a lot in real life.) Most of these people balk when they hear the actual sound of Eastern chants.

In short, anything you can buy on Amazon is probably way left of center. Chant is for church, not CD players, so if you're imitating something you got on Amazon, that may be the wrong approach.

I hope I haven't made Podkarpatska's finger-scratching nightmare come true. angel
You have some good points concerning Angelopoulos' choir and musical style in general, but the research he and his mentor Simon Karas, have done and the the effort they have put into finding and analyzing long lost ancient manuscripts, is overwhelming, I respect them for that:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-_XjnF09TI
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« Reply #47 on: November 01, 2012, 02:08:52 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.
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« Reply #48 on: November 01, 2012, 02:10:36 PM »

You have some good points concerning Angelopoulos' choir and musical style in general, but the research he and his mentor Simon Karas, have done and the the effort they have put into finding and analyzing long lost ancient manuscripts, is overwhelming, I respect them for that:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-_XjnF09TI
[/quote]

Well, you're on ground zero, and I live across the pond, so your experience means something to me...I'm stuck working from recordings and books, and a handful of live psaltes (albeit some good ones--no one publicly known, though). I generally avoid historical-theoretical discussions, because I am not familiar enough with the literature. My understanding of the whole thing is that in the first half of the last century, there was a whole gaggle of musicologuists, Greek and European, butting heads over what the True Greek Tradition was, and Karas more or less came out on top. I haven't read his book, so I have no positive or negative criticism of it.

I try to keep things centered around piety and oral tradition rather than manuscripts. The research into medieval Byzantine chant is very interesting, though.

Angelopoulos is a bit of a puzzle. The EBX's interpretations seem to have been gradually getting more extreme since they were founded. I'd have to go back and listen to them more, since I haven't for a while.

Again, I'm talking about contemporary practice here, not theory or history.
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« Reply #49 on: November 01, 2012, 02:12:35 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!
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« Reply #50 on: November 01, 2012, 02:25:10 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.
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« Reply #51 on: November 01, 2012, 02:40:51 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!
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« Reply #52 on: November 01, 2012, 02:47:38 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!

Yes, but are you from Presov or Uzhorod? Stuff like that can split a church you know!
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« Reply #53 on: November 01, 2012, 02:53:48 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!

Yes, but are you from Presov or Uzhorod? Stuff like that can split a church you know!

Uzhorod, of course.  That schismatic Toth sings like a Presovite. Wink
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« Reply #54 on: November 01, 2012, 03:04:39 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!

Yes, but are you from Presov or Uzhorod? Stuff like that can split a church you know!

Uzhorod, of course.  That schismatic Toth sings like a Presovite. Wink

If you want to go along with the Magyar poseurs, be my guest!  Wink

For what its worth to the rest of you - Schultz and I are having fun playing with the sort of arguments which resulted in many towns having four or five Orthodox and/or Greek Catholic churches back in the day. They would argue this stuff, add much rumor and innuendo till the cows came home or the bars closed with great passion and invective and, not unlike certain blogs today, use the print media of their day to sow division, discord and finally schism. We can laugh today at the passions of our grandfathers, but those involved with current internecine disputes should look to the past and try to figure a way through the thickets which does not involve such nonsense.
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« Reply #55 on: November 01, 2012, 03:09:49 PM »

You have some good points concerning Angelopoulos' choir and musical style in general, but the research he and his mentor Simon Karas, have done and the the effort they have put into finding and analyzing long lost ancient manuscripts, is overwhelming, I respect them for that:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-_XjnF09TI

Well, you're on ground zero, and I live across the pond, so your experience means something to me...I'm stuck working from recordings and books, and a handful of live psaltes (albeit some good ones--no one publicly known, though). I generally avoid historical-theoretical discussions, because I am not familiar enough with the literature. My understanding of the whole thing is that in the first half of the last century, there was a whole gaggle of musicologuists, Greek and European, butting heads over what the True Greek Tradition was, and Karas more or less came out on top. I haven't read his book, so I have no positive or negative criticism of it.

I try to keep things centered around piety and oral tradition rather than manuscripts. The research into medieval Byzantine chant is very interesting, though.

Angelopoulos is a bit of a puzzle. The EBX's interpretations seem to have been gradually getting more extreme since they were founded. I'd have to go back and listen to them more, since I haven't for a while.

Again, I'm talking about contemporary practice here, not theory or history.
[/quote]
I agree with you, Angelopoulos has become more of a theoretician in the Byzantine Music lately (to put it bluntly, as one psaltis I know has put it, "his chaning nowadays does not emit insence") but his contribution in a deeper understanding of the neumes who had been forgotten (or pushed aside) by the practical chanters, can't be nullified. The golden rule IMHO is to follow the classic interpretation which has been traditioned ('xcuse my neologism) from generation to generation on one hand, and at the same time to not disregard the fresh (and interesting) air Angelopoulos has brought into the *cough*static and moldy*cough* world of Byzantine Music in Greece. It's good that we can judge Angelopoulos harshly but at the same time we should not forget that before Angelopoulos, the norm was to hear polyphonic "I-presume-it's-authentic-western-music-and-if-it's-not-at-least-I-do-not-yield-to-Turkish-music" virtuosos singing minores.
Btw my No1 favourite chanter is Chrysanthos Theosodopoulos (+1988) of Thessaloniki:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4g7I0Z5J5g
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLCYn_DA0yE
Close second comes the Master (Charilaos Taliadoros), listen to an 86-year old voice:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jf-nvi_uPZo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0eqOR2cnP0
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« Reply #56 on: November 01, 2012, 03:38:22 PM »

Greek cantors, but Russian choirs.
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« Reply #57 on: November 01, 2012, 05:13:09 PM »

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Could you post some examples of the different variations, if there are any oo youtube? Would be interesting to hear.

Close second comes the Master (Charilaos Taliadoros), listen to an 86-year old voice:

If only all OAP psaltes sounded like that!
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« Reply #58 on: November 01, 2012, 06:42:25 PM »

I agree with you, Angelopoulos has become more of a theoretician in the Byzantine Music lately (to put it bluntly, as one psaltis I know has put it, "his chaning nowadays does not emit insence") but his contribution in a deeper understanding of the neumes who had been forgotten (or pushed aside) by the practical chanters, can't be nullified. The golden rule IMHO is to follow the classic interpretation which has been traditioned ('xcuse my neologism) from generation to generation on one hand, and at the same time to not disregard the fresh (and interesting) air Angelopoulos has brought into the *cough*static and moldy*cough* world of Byzantine Music in Greece. It's good that we can judge Angelopoulos harshly but at the same time we should not forget that before Angelopoulos, the norm was to hear polyphonic "I-presume-it's-authentic-western-music-and-if-it's-not-at-least-I-do-not-yield-to-Turkish-music" virtuosos singing minores.
Btw my No1 favourite chanter is Chrysanthos Theosodopoulos (+1988) of Thessaloniki:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4g7I0Z5J5g
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLCYn_DA0yE
Close second comes the Master (Charilaos Taliadoros), listen to an 86-year old voice:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jf-nvi_uPZo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0eqOR2cnP0

I should point out that if it weren't for the work of the Karas school, I would probably have never got around to learning neumes, so I am indebted to them. And I agree with you about how silly it is that so many Greek people don't appreciate their own liturgical musical tradition (don't know what the situation is like in Greece--I've never been there). At the same time, I've never bought into the "Westernized music is bad" spiel, which is usually what I hear from Karas/Angelopoulos chanters, although some of our Westernized choir compositions do sound really foofy, like they belong in a Walt Disney movie.

I see you admire the Thessalonikean chanters...that's similar to the tastes of the guys I hang around. Personally, I prefer Nafpliotis, Pringos, and Monk Dositheos as my primary resources. Pringos is sort of a hybrid of Thessalonikean and Patriarchal style.
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« Reply #59 on: November 02, 2012, 02:50:32 PM »

I should point out that if it weren't for the work of the Karas school, I would probably have never got around to learning neumes, so I am indebted to them. And I agree with you about how silly it is that so many Greek people don't appreciate their own liturgical musical tradition (don't know what the situation is like in Greece--I've never been there). At the same time, I've never bought into the "Westernized music is bad" spiel, which is usually what I hear from Karas/Angelopoulos chanters, although some of our Westernized choir compositions do sound really foofy, like they belong in a Walt Disney movie.
Those who have told you that westernized ecclesiastical choir compositions are bad spiel, should look at the music of Ionian islands; the Ionian islands (i.e. Corfu, Zakynthos, Cephallonia) have developed a polyphonic musical tradition (probably due to their proximity to Italy and at the same time their long distance from Constantinople) which is unique in Greece (and does not remind of Walt Disney cheesy musical style at all):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XI3O9lFe0OI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=udBeKRKNJU0
I see you admire the Thessalonikean chanters...that's similar to the tastes of the guys I hang around. Personally, I prefer Nafpliotis, Pringos, and Monk Dositheos as my primary resources. Pringos is sort of a hybrid of Thessalonikean and Patriarchal style.
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« Reply #60 on: November 02, 2012, 04:55:02 PM »


Super!
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« Reply #61 on: November 03, 2012, 10:35:09 AM »

Albanians sometimes also use westernized byzantine chant, a bit similar to this one from Zakyntos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBPlNm0eaN4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fEw30U_rFHY&feature=related

I must say that although I love byzantine chant, I prefer when it's performed rather by choirs, not chanters. It's hm, let's more, more majestic

That's interesting chant of Eulogitaria: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfgPqdgqQ1g&list=FL3JHY2WBkYVQ1uEjF3uB-dw&index=8&feature=plpp_video
Ukrainian/Rusyn chant, but more ancient, when Rusyn chant was very similar to the Bulgarian (also in present times many times in the sheets there is written "Bulgarian melody"). You find there byzantine tone 5th
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« Reply #62 on: November 03, 2012, 11:02:30 AM »

Albanians sometimes also use westernized byzantine chant, a bit similar to this one from Zakyntos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBPlNm0eaN4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fEw30U_rFHY&feature=related

I must say that although I love byzantine chant, I prefer when it's performed rather by choirs, not chanters. It's hm, let's more, more majestic

That's interesting chant of Eulogitaria: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfgPqdgqQ1g&list=FL3JHY2WBkYVQ1uEjF3uB-dw&index=8&feature=plpp_video
Ukrainian/Rusyn chant, but more ancient, when Rusyn chant was very similar to the Bulgarian (also in present times many times in the sheets there is written "Bulgarian melody"). You find there byzantine tone 5th

Quite correct, in the authoritative work on Rusyn chant by Bokshaj in the late 1800's/early 1900's, the notation ' Bulharski' may be found scattered among a number of Irmosi and funereal hymns - particularly those of St. John of Damascus. That doesn't mean they match up, note for note, with the Bulgarian, but rather that over centuries they were passed along orally as such and as a result, they developed their own cadences etc...
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« Reply #63 on: November 03, 2012, 11:43:35 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!

Yes, but are you from Presov or Uzhorod? Stuff like that can split a church you know!

Uzhorod, of course.  That schismatic Toth sings like a Presovite. Wink

Yet none have the grace and beauty, not to mention the power of Venice and Gabrieli (who died 400 years ago this year), Monteverdi, and Grande - or the Germans like Preatorius and Schutz. 
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« Reply #64 on: November 08, 2012, 12:03:29 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!

Yes, but are you from Presov or Uzhorod? Stuff like that can split a church you know!

Uzhorod, of course.  That schismatic Toth sings like a Presovite. Wink

Yet none have the grace and beauty, not to mention the power of Venice and Gabrieli (who died 400 years ago this year), Monteverdi, and Grande - or the Germans like Preatorius and Schutz. 

Personally, I am of the mindset that in the ears of our Lord, all praise is good so long as it comes from a pure heart and is offered to Him in the proper frame of mind. While our Orthodox tradition may prefer one form over another, I seriously doubt if the works Punch cites are 'rejected' by Him or somehow found to be 'inferior'.  Mozart offered some powerful music as well for these purposes.
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« Reply #65 on: November 08, 2012, 12:54:03 PM »


Btw my No1 favourite chanter is Chrysanthos Theosodopoulos (+1988) of Thessaloniki:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4g7I0Z5J5g
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLCYn_DA0yE

Chrysanthos Theosodopoulos reminds me of my father's chanting. Before he was ordained, he was the head chanter at the Bulgarian Exarchate in Constantinople. If I may be bold, while technically both my father and Mr. Theosodopoulos excelled, my father's tone was more mellow and thus more pleasing at least to my soul.
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« Reply #66 on: November 08, 2012, 08:54:27 PM »


Btw my No1 favourite chanter is Chrysanthos Theosodopoulos (+1988) of Thessaloniki:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4g7I0Z5J5g
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLCYn_DA0yE

Chrysanthos Theosodopoulos reminds me of my father's chanting. Before he was ordained, he was the head chanter at the Bulgarian Exarchate in Constantinople. If I may be bold, while technically both my father and Mr. Theosodopoulos excelled, my father's tone was more mellow and thus more pleasing at least to my soul.

Carl, we can except that, but only because you are being objective and non-partison   Wink
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« Reply #67 on: November 09, 2012, 10:50:38 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

Nice! And I hadn't heard Romanian chanters using what is called complex chronos before...it gives it such a fluid sound!

Thanks.
Those are peasants. Whatever musical theory they learned was through oral transmission, a very localized one, to boot.

Behold the beauty of oral transmission!

The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!

Yes, but are you from Presov or Uzhorod? Stuff like that can split a church you know!

Uzhorod, of course.  That schismatic Toth sings like a Presovite. Wink

Yet none have the grace and beauty, not to mention the power of Venice and Gabrieli (who died 400 years ago this year), Monteverdi, and Grande - or the Germans like Preatorius and Schutz. 

Personally, I am of the mindset that in the ears of our Lord, all praise is good so long as it comes from a pure heart and is offered to Him in the proper frame of mind. While our Orthodox tradition may prefer one form over another, I seriously doubt if the works Punch cites are 'rejected' by Him or somehow found to be 'inferior'.  Mozart offered some powerful music as well for these purposes.

Ah, we are of the same mindset.  One of the most beautiful Nativities that I ever celebrated was in a Russian Orthodox Church made up of (at the time) a good number of Lutheran converts.   After participating in the beautiful Nativity service done in all of its ROCOR fullness, we all retreated to the Church hall where we sang our beloved German Christmas songs, some even in German.  I am sure that God did not mind.
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« Reply #68 on: November 10, 2012, 02:04:25 AM »

Russian chant is easier on the American ears, however I have heard some beautiful Byzantine chant when properly done. Sadly I haven't herad much of it done well.

Thomas
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« Reply #69 on: November 10, 2012, 08:49:22 AM »


+1

It brought a tear to my eyes.
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« Reply #70 on: November 10, 2012, 11:51:11 AM »

Russian chant is easier on the American ears, however I have heard some beautiful Byzantine chant when properly done. Sadly I haven't herad much of it done well.

Thomas


I think that some familiarity of the 'ambiance' of Russian sounds may be due to the relative popularity of some Russian music in the pre-war and Cold War eras through the Don Cossack Chorus and later even the Red Army Chorus and some basso profundo types who may have been on American TV in the days of variety shows and Lawrence Welk. Also a fair number of movie sound tracks which were popular, starting back with Dr. Zhivago in the 60's and continuing on to the present used Russian background chants to portray an eastern or Orthodox ambiance. I don't think that Byzantine sounds made a similar inroad, particular since to the untrained ear they do bear a tonal similarity to other mideastern sounds - at least to American ears. This is unfair to Byzantine music. In recent years Bulgarian folk and church music had a niche presence in the US market so perhaps things can change.
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« Reply #71 on: November 10, 2012, 12:33:08 PM »

Russian chant is easier on the American ears, however I have heard some beautiful Byzantine chant when properly done. Sadly I haven't herad much of it done well.

Thomas


I think that some familiarity of the 'ambiance' of Russian sounds may be due to the relative popularity of some Russian music in the pre-war and Cold War eras through the Don Cossack Chorus and later even the Red Army Chorus and some basso profundo types who may have been on American TV in the days of variety shows and Lawrence Welk. Also a fair number of movie sound tracks which were popular, starting back with Dr. Zhivago in the 60's and continuing on to the present used Russian background chants to portray an eastern or Orthodox ambiance. I don't think that Byzantine sounds made a similar inroad, particular since to the untrained ear they do bear a tonal similarity to other mideastern sounds - at least to American ears. This is unfair to Byzantine music. In recent years Bulgarian folk and church music had a niche presence in the US market so perhaps things can change.

I do not agree with this at all.  Western familiarity with Russian music far predates the post Cold War years.  There were many Russian composers of classical music in the late 19th and earl 20th Centuries.  I remember the 1812 Overture being taught in my music classes in 5th Grade, with the piece being heavily intertwined with the First Tone of Russian Chant.  I can remember listening to liturgies from Rachmaninov before I knew what a Divine Liturgy even was, much less the Russian Orthodox Church.  And what about Prokofiev?  I would say that it would be nearly impossible to have had any music education without coming into contact with Russian composers.  And these Russian composers often used elements of their folk and Church music in their compositions.  Byzantine music, on the other hand, is uncommon to the Western ear, and often flat out offensive.  Although for my part, I have learned to like some of it.
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« Reply #72 on: November 10, 2012, 02:40:46 PM »

Russian chant is easier on the American ears, however I have heard some beautiful Byzantine chant when properly done. Sadly I haven't herad much of it done well.

Thomas


I think that some familiarity of the 'ambiance' of Russian sounds may be due to the relative popularity of some Russian music in the pre-war and Cold War eras through the Don Cossack Chorus and later even the Red Army Chorus and some basso profundo types who may have been on American TV in the days of variety shows and Lawrence Welk. Also a fair number of movie sound tracks which were popular, starting back with Dr. Zhivago in the 60's and continuing on to the present used Russian background chants to portray an eastern or Orthodox ambiance. I don't think that Byzantine sounds made a similar inroad, particular since to the untrained ear they do bear a tonal similarity to other mideastern sounds - at least to American ears. This is unfair to Byzantine music. In recent years Bulgarian folk and church music had a niche presence in the US market so perhaps things can change.

I do not agree with this at all.  Western familiarity with Russian music far predates the post Cold War years.  There were many Russian composers of classical music in the late 19th and earl 20th Centuries.  I remember the 1812 Overture being taught in my music classes in 5th Grade, with the piece being heavily intertwined with the First Tone of Russian Chant.  I can remember listening to liturgies from Rachmaninov before I knew what a Divine Liturgy even was, much less the Russian Orthodox Church.  And what about Prokofiev?  I would say that it would be nearly impossible to have had any music education without coming into contact with Russian composers.  And these Russian composers often used elements of their folk and Church music in their compositions.  Byzantine music, on the other hand, is uncommon to the Western ear, and often flat out offensive.  Although for my part, I have learned to like some of it.

Quite right, the stuff I referred to fits in with western familiarity with Russian classical composition - my fingers were a bit ahead of my thinking.
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« Reply #73 on: November 10, 2012, 03:43:16 PM »


The same debate goes on within the Rusyn chant tradition. In the United States, the Greek Catholics have insisted on mandatory compliance with written notations which goes against centuries of oral tradition and which has caused great debate within their churches. The Orthodox who use that chant are not so much locked into the written methodologies, hence more regional differentiation can be observed in our churches. The comment about peasants is quite true as there were no annotated sets of chant available among the varied east European communities until the end of the 19th century.

Bokšaj or death!
[/quote]

Yes, but are you from Presov or Uzhorod? Stuff like that can split a church you know!
[/quote]

Uzhorod, of course.  That schismatic Toth sings like a Presovite. Wink
[/quote]
Ah you mean what St. Alexis Toth is singing in heaven with the rest of the saints?
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« Reply #74 on: November 26, 2012, 08:25:40 AM »

I love both and appreciate the ancient feel of Byzantine Chant. However I voted Russian. Russian chant lifts my soul. I suppose you could say I "feel" Russian chant.

I prefer Gregorian or Old Roman Chant above all but that wasn't an option.  Grin
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« Reply #75 on: November 26, 2012, 02:30:35 PM »

If by Russian chant you mean the  police you hear today in the cathedrals I would vote Byzantine. If you mean the Russian chant before it was westernized, I would vote Russian.
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« Reply #76 on: November 26, 2012, 02:35:21 PM »

This is a good example of a village church in Transylvania:
http://www.trilulilu.ro/video-evenimente/video-biserica-din-criscior-hunedoara

look at those icons! They have light bulbs all around them!!! ahhhhh!!!
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« Reply #77 on: November 26, 2012, 02:41:05 PM »

PS:

Does anyone know where one can listen to actual old believers chant?

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« Reply #78 on: November 26, 2012, 02:43:55 PM »

Old Roman Chant above all but that wasn't an option.  Grin

Old Roman is basically Byzantine chant in Latin.
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« Reply #79 on: November 26, 2012, 03:11:50 PM »

Old Roman Chant above all but that wasn't an option.  Grin

Old Roman is basically Byzantine chant in Latin.

Assuming that by Byzantine you mean the actual medieval Byzantine chants, and not the modern "Byzantine" ones, that's a possibility.
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